Be careful when driving around Boston. If you have an old map then some of the tunnels might not be on it yet. Also, a lot of the roads are one way, or turn into one way in the middle. This is especially true around the Theatre District and Chinatown. Also, for some reason, a lot of the roads aren’t very well lit in and around Boston University and Boylston Street so if it’s dark then be careful of people crossing the streets. There is still lots of construction going on so you will want to be careful when driving in general.
The Massachusetts Turnpike (Masspike) is the 138-mile long stretch of Interstate 90, which spans Massachusetts from West Stockbridge on the New York border to Logan International Airport in East Boston, and on to Route 1A. The Massachusetts Turnpike is generally known as the 'Mass Pike'.
The Masspike is a toll road; it costs $4.60 to travel from Exit 6 in Chicopee to Logan Airport. No toll is charged for passenger vehicle travel between Chicopee and the New York border. The return trip from Logan Airport costs $3 more, since the Ted Williams Tunnel has a toll in the Westbound direction.
Massachusetts uses a system of sequential numbering for the exits on the Pike. Since the time that the exits were originally numbered, more have been added, leading to situations like Exit 11, which is a minor state route, and 11A, which is a major Interstate 10 miles away.
Also, near Boston, some of the "exits" are actually solely onramps and are not signed as exits, so there is no "Exit 21" signed.
Traffic, roadworks and getting stuck in a tunnel on route to the airport, can make this journey hellish at times. Take some water and sandwiches, if you are travelling during the rush hour.
Downtown Boston is fairly safe at all hours because it is so densely populated and well-lit, but use good judgement. Like any big city there are bad guys looking for a mark. Stay away from Roxbury and parts of Dorchester.
Driving in Boston is not for the faint of heart. If you can drive in Boston you can drive anywhere. However, the reverse is not true. With the big dig having most of downtown torn up it's difficult even for native Bostonians to navigate. Use the 'T'. It's reliable and goes just about everywhere worth going. There is also an extensive bus system to augment the subway. If you must fly into Boston (Logan airport), you can take public transportation into the city.
If you are driving around Boston, do pay attention on the road... most of the roads are one way street... and allow left or right turn only... so bring a good map!! You might have to make a few turns before getting to your final destination~
Is driving in Boston as bad as they say it is? Why yes, yes it is.
Having driven in larger cities such as Phoenix, Toronto, and Montreal where traffic is reputed to be bad - Boston driving tops them all in terms of complicity!
So why is driving in Boston so darn bad? Largely in part because most of the city is not based on a square, grid system like most other cities. The Big Dig - the largest and most complicated roadway construction in American history even has their own website.
Anyone living in, near or having been to Boston ever, will tell you public transit is the way. One way streets a plenty, Boston must be the worst driving city in North America.
If you do get brave and think driving is best (which we foolishly did most the time) take your patience with you and plan, plan, plan well ahead of where you want to go. If you're not sure, pull over and ask and take an up to date, detailed map. A must!
Just when you think you've conquered Boston driving, don't get too thrilled. From experience, Bostonians are the most hostile drivers we've encountered yet. While Montreal drivers are impatient and hard to handle, Boston drivers are that - plus angry. If you even wait a nanno-second too long at a green light they're not above bumping your car, giving you the finger, screaming and beeping.
And thats what they do to eachother! So if you're a tourist you better familairize yourself pretty quickly with the area if you're driving. If you do find that driving is simply a must for you and the other drivers don't freak you out - parking in Boston certainly will.
Planning on spending a full-day at the New England Aquarium are you? Be ready to fork over $28 in US Funds (thats $45 Canadian). Going to the Boston Museum of Fine Arts? Be prepared to spend $17 US ($30 Canadian) for just two measely hours at the parking garage (which also happens to frequently be full).
In a nut shell, bring the most comfy pair of walking shoes you own!
The good news about driving in Boston is that you'll eventually end up where you started. Watch the signs. They often sneak up on you. Left exit? Right exit? Just remember, it's better to turn around and start again than to cut through three lines of traffic to make an exit...be careful!
Driving in the city is a bit crazy especially if you're going to the brewpubs. Better to take the T as Boston has perhaps the best mass transit system in the United States. See link below for details.
If you drive, pay attention to the roads. Lots of roads in local are tricky. They turn off suddenly rather than go straight. The road signs are small. So if you are not confident to your eyesight, and not familiar with Boston, wear your glasses and pay more attention to every cross.
I just need to reiterate my admonitions not to drive a car into Boston, especially the city centre. Boston is unlike any other city in North America in terms of its physical composition, and the winding, narrow nature of its streets coupled with the heavy congestion endemic of high population densities inevitably result in a nightmarish scenario for anyone used to the grid system of wide streets so prevalent on this continent. The accompanying photo is of heavy gridlock in a neighbourhood commercial district quite a ways from downtown, which was still nerve-wrecking to endure (the photo was taken reflected off my rear-view mirror). Unpredictable events, such as construction or flash flooding (Storrow Drive, one of the city's major highways, is rather low-lying and prone to inundation from the adjacent Charles River) can turn what can typically be a 20-minute joruney into one lasting two hours or more. Many intersections lack any indication of lane delineation, some highways allow for travel on breakdown lanes and road rage is highly proliferous. I urge even the most avid automobile aficionado to abandon their vehicle for the duration of their trip and make extensive use of their own legs or of the public transportation system for safe and rapid transit about the city. Despite whatever nightmarish things some individuals may have to say about the uncleanliness or inefficiency of the public transit system, nine times out of ten it will be a superior conveyance within the city centre to a car or truck.
Parking, of course, is another issue altogether. Having lived in the metropolitan Boston region for six years, I can locate free parking in several peripheral areas around the city centre, but it is impossible to penetrate downtown Boston without having to endure exorbitant parking rates. The most economical (and centrally located) garage is that under Boston Common, but it tends to fill fast even when none of the city's frequent events are taking place.
The South End used to be home to many of the city's assorted minority groups- blacks and hispanics especially, before its "rediscovery" in the late 1960s began its gradual transformation into a gentrified district of mainly white professionals. However, many of those who were forced out of the neighbourhood by rising prices return every Sunday to their traditional churches in the neighbourhood, causing a traffic crisis as cars from other city neighbourhoods pile up and pedestrians jam the sidewalks. In the photo you can see cars parked two deep down the centre of one street, begging to invite mayhem. It's just another arcane little traffic situation which continually beguiles Boston and holds it in the grips of tyrranical gridlock.
The Lenox Hotel Boston
5 Reviews and 1625 Opinions The Lenox Hotel is a family owned hotel in an older building located in the Back Bay. I loved the...
Hotel Commonwealth Boston
3 Reviews and 1771 Opinions This looks like the old Kenmore Hotel of the 1970's Grahm Jr College used this as a dorm and...
THE LIBERTY HOTEL Boston
4 Reviews and 114 Opinions The Liberty Hotel was built in the old Charles Street Jail, located adjacent to Massachusetts...